How I Became A Meditating Christian

How I Became A Meditating Christian (1)

Posted by on Jun 17, 2014 in How I Became A Meditating Christian | 10 comments

How I Became A Meditating Christian (1)

NOTE: I’m outlining the next series of blogposts (which I will be using to hammer out my thinking for my next book). While I’m doing that, and since our spiritual community is giving a summertime focus to meditation, I thought I’d repost this blog series from 2012. Have a read!  Doug If you’re familiar with centering prayer, you realize that when we Christians meditate, it doesn’t look much different from those who meditate in the East. This frightens a lot of good Christians. I was one of them. In this series of posts, I want to tell you the story of my journey from...

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How I Became A Meditating Christian (2)

Posted by on Jun 24, 2014 in How I Became A Meditating Christian | Comments Off on How I Became A Meditating Christian (2)

How I Became A Meditating Christian (2)

Let me pause from telling my own story for a moment, to provide some historical context for my journey to becoming a meditating Christian. In 325 AD Rome collectivized Christianity into a hierarchical structure, paid for the structure with taxation, and made us the official religion of the Empire. We went from being a communal group of spiritual friends to an institutional religion. We went from the being the persecuted to the preferred; from the powerless to the powerful. And as the truism goes; power corrupts. And it did. We began to mix Roman aspirations with the will of God. In many ways...

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How I Became A Meditating Christian (3)

Posted by on Jul 1, 2014 in How I Became A Meditating Christian | 6 comments

Born in the late 1950’s, I am a child of the Enlightenment. Unlike my children’s generation, my primary influences growing up were Enlightenment sensibilities. Consequently, a religion (like Reformation Christianity) that followed Jesus in rationalist ways was a good fit for me. I had a burning desire to connect to the Divine, and my religion fed that  desire. It taught me to study the Bible, pray with my mind and my words, and do good deeds with my body. All very good for a devout Enlightenment boy. I would probably have stayed with this version of Christianity but for two things that...

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How I Became a Meditating Christian (4)

Posted by on Jul 8, 2014 in How I Became A Meditating Christian | Comments Off on How I Became a Meditating Christian (4)

I was a young Protestant boy when Vatican II concluded in 1965. It didn’t impact me until 20 years later. But it is one of the reasons I am a meditating Christian. Vatican II opened the windows and let some air into our religion. At the council, the pope gave two jobs to the monastic orders, and particularly to the Trappists. First, he asked them to restore our contemplative heritage. Recognizing the historical shift we’ve talked about, Vatican II began to explore spiritual practices to help our souls in this era. Second, he asked the religious orders to open dialogue with the...

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How I Became A Meditating Christian (5)

Posted by on Jul 15, 2014 in How I Became A Meditating Christian | 3 comments

Some years ago, our church hosted an inter-faith day of meditation. We put an ad in the local New Age newspaper, and made it a decidedly non-Christian event. Each group was asked to lead a meditation according to their tradition and then say a few words afterward. When it was my turn, I led a Christian meditation. In my words afterward, I reminded people about the ad that had invited them: Recognizing we have more in common than our differences, we invite you to meet together… Hosting such an event raised a bit of a flap with a few churches in town, but I am glad we did it. Because of...

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